New smartphone health application helps better manage prescription medications

WINNIPEG, June 2, 2011 – Canadian consumers want more education and options for health self-management. A Deloitte consumer study found 54 per cent of those surveyed* are trying to learn how to prevent health problems and improve their well-being, and they want electronic tools to help them do so. Now consumers can access DrugHub, Great-West Life’s new, free health application for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, which they can personalize with their prescription information to help manage their prescription medications.

“Managing prescription drug usage can be complex, particularly for people with chronic health conditions or who require multiple medications over extended periods of time,” says Brad Fedorchuk, Vice-President of Group Marketing for Great-West Life, a leading Canadian life and health insurer, which processed $2.1 billion in prescription drug claim submissions in 2010. Taking prescription medications correctly as prescribed is one simple but effective way people can enhance their health self-management, and DrugHub can help them do so.”

The DrugHub app is intuitive and easy to use, and offers a convenient way to keep track of medications – in effect, putting “a virtual library of prescription drug information at your fingertips,” according to Fedorchuk. The application can also help track medications for aging parents, children, or others. “DrugHub displays multiple prescriptions, issues reminders for multiple individuals about when to take medications, tracks dosages and flags when it is time to order refills,” Fedorchuk says. “By helping to manage some of this complexity, we believe DrugHub can help people follow their medication dosages and schedules more closely, thereby improving health outcomes.”

Security and confidentiality features are built in to protect personal information. DrugHub also provides access to an extensive library of drug information, including simple-to-use drug interaction and side effect reference tools for each drug and access to thousands of physician-reviewed drug articles.

DrugHub is the first mobile health application to be issued by a Canadian group benefits insurer. The innovative health application builds on Great-West Life’s industry-first suite of eClaims services — including being the first and only insurer in Canada at this time to offer text message notification advising group plan members of the status of a claim.

To preview the free DrugHub application go to: http://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/drughub-medicine-cabinet-in/id421028414?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D2

* Deloitte 2009 Canadian health care consumer survey report, “Treating Patients as consumers.” http://www.deloitte.com/assets/Dcom-Canada/Local%20Assets/Documents/Public%20Sector/ca_en_healthcare_consumersurvey_oct09.pdf accessed March 21, 2011.

About Great-West Life

Founded in Winnipeg in 1891, Great-West Life has long been a leader in the group benefits marketplace. The company has established this position over many decades, through its commitment to quality customer services and through a comprehensive selection of cost-effective benefits plans. Great-West Life offers effective benefit solutions for large and small employee groups of any size. The company serves the needs of more than 32,000 plan sponsors and their plan members and handles approximately 50 million group health and dental claims transactions for its plan members and their dependents each year. www.greatwestlife.com